BANGALORE: To boost the growing eco-tourism sector, the state Cabinet has decided to constitute an ‘Eco-Tourism Development Board (ETDB)’ which would formulate policy framework to attract more tourists and ensure protection of flora and fauna.
Briefing the media on the meeting on Thursday, Higher Education Minister Dr V S Acharya said the decision would help boost the growing eco-tourism segment.
Elaborating on the issue, he said the proposed Board, which would be headed by the Forest Minister and senior-level officials of the departments of PWD, Forest, Tourism and Infrastructure, would formulate the policy framework.
“It will also be empowered to regulate issues relating to levying of fee, quantum of investment and other related issues” he said.
The policy would also envisage the protection of flora and fauna while exploiting the eco-tourism potential in the state. It would encourage the involvement of local people, and promote private sector participation in tourism, he said.
Rs 115 Cr More for First Grade Colleges
The Cabinet approved additional grant of Rs 115 crore to construct 1,238 classrooms for First Grade Colleges and PG Centres in state-owned institutions.
“The state government would spend over Rs 558 crore for the purpose in next three years,” said Dr V S Acharya.
“The necessity to construct additional classrooms arose following government’s decision to introduce new science faculty in those colleges.”
Housing Projects in Agri Lands
In another important decision, the Cabinet approved developing housing projects on agriculture land for which no land conversion would be required.
Now an agriculturist can build any housing project in the land owned by him to an extent of five cents provided the beneficiaries of the housing project are from the same locality.
The Cabinet also approved handing over of 105 acres of revenue land and 15 acres of Kharab land to the Karnataka Housing Board at Hampapura in the Bangalore Urban district.
Land developers had to reserve 25 per cent of the land for the benefit of the economically weaker sections, he Acharya.
The Cabinet also approved releasing 32.15 acres of revenue land in Hulimavu village in Nanjangud taluk to the KHB at a cost of Rs 3.25 lakh per acre for a housing project.
The state Cabinet has also fixed Rs 24.50 lakh per acre to purchase land at K Nidaguni village in Madikeri taluk for the KHB to develop residential plots in an area of 65.35 acres of revenue land.
Shifting of Ambedkar Statue: CM to Take Call
The state Cabinet, at its meeting held here on Thursday, empowered Chief Minister D V Sadananda Gowda to resolve the contentious issue of shifting of the statue of B R Ambedkar located in front of the Vidhana Soudha and enable the BMRCL to lay underground track for the Bangalore Metro project. The issue came up for discussion at the meeting, and the Cabinet decided to leave the matter to the CM. “D V Sadananda Gowda will take a final decision on the issue in consultation with Social Welfare Minister Narayana Swamy,” said Minister Dr V S Acharya. Before taking any decision the opinion of the technical committee on the safety of the statue would be elicited, he said.